Stress incontinence is the involuntary loss of urine when there is an increase in abdominal pressure (e.g., during coughing or exercise). It is a common disorder with 20% of women suffering from stress incontinence at one time or another.
The inconvenience it causes varies from woman to woman. In most cases treatment of stress incontinence is simple, however, a small number of women may require surgical treatment.
Nearly all women with stress incontinence can either be cured or the degree of incontinence much improved.
The urinary system
Urine produced in the kidneys is passed via the ureters to the bladder where it is stored until it is convenient for it to be emptied. The bladder is simply a muscular bag that expands to store up to 300-500 ml of urine.
When you pass urine the bladder contracts. Most women empty their bladder 4-6 times a day passing 200-300ml of urine each time The urethra is the outlet from the bladder. It passes through the pelvic floor muscles in front of the vagina. These muscles act like a control valve around the urethra. They tighten when you cough or exercise and relax when urine is passed.
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